With just 45 days to go there are a ton of fan theories floating around about Star Wars: The Force Awakens – but one of them is taking the internet by storm because of just how well it’s documented.
A user on Reddit proffered the theory that Jar Jar Binks isn’t just a bumbling idiot for comic relief but is a Sith Lord, perhaps even Palpatine’s master. According to the original post on Reddit, which has now spawned it’s own website (DarthJarJar.com):
So first, let’s establish Jar Jar as a skilled warrior. While this does not in itself necessitate a connection with the Physical Force, it’s highly suggestive in the Star Wars universe– very rarely do we see “normal” characters exhibiting extraordinary stuntwork or physical feats unless they are Jedi, Sith, or at least force sensitives.
So here’s Jar Jar nonchalantly executing a standing 20 foot twisting somersault.
Now, taken out of context, if you were watching a Star Wars movie and saw a character casually execute this maneuver, you’d probably assume it was a Jedi. In the context of Jar Jar, though, we don’t… because elsewhere he so thoroughly convinces us that he’s nothing more than a harmless dunce with his inane dialogue and cowardly-lion act.
He also manages to convince us that he’s a bumbling oaf in the midst of pitched battle… even though he’s always incredibly, amazingly successful. Whether single-handedly taking down a battledroid tank, or unleashing a barrage of boombas on their front lines, or precisely targeting multiple enemies with a blaster tangled around his ankle (!!!), we simply roll our eyes and attribute it to dumb “luck.”
But is it? Obi-Wan warned us otherwise:
If that’s not enough for you, consider Jar Jar’s blatant use of force powers throughout the movie:
Jedi (and presumably Sith) exhibit telltale signs when using the Mind Trick to implant suggestions or influence behavior. For one, they always gesticulate and not-so-subtly wave their hands at the target.
Here’s a look at some pivotal Jar Jar moments during his political career:
Jar Jar using Force Persuasion as he hand-waves the entire Galactic Senate and ushers in the death of democracy.
Actually, if you watch the prequels with the idea that Jar Jar might be a manipulative, dark character, you begin to notice just how insidious and subtle his manipulation is, and how effective, in almost every sequence he’s involved in, and also just how hyper-aware of the overarching plot he really is.
Examples: Jar Jar tricking the Jedi into traveling through the planet core (so that they need him). Jar Jar carefully causing a scene so that they run into Anakin. Jar Jar constantly mocking Qui-Gon behind his back while Anakin is watching (so that Anakin learns disrespect for Jedi authority early on). Jar Jar telling an 8 year old child that the queen is “pretty hot,” fanning the flames of the child’s infatuation that is exploited later on. I could go on.
Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your point of view), the vitriolic response to the bumbling oaf of Jar Jar may have caused George Lucas to alter his plans and hide the true “Phantom Menace”:
Here’s what I think happened: I think that Jar Jar was initially intended to be the prequel (and Dark Side) equivalent of Yoda. Just as Yoda has his “big reveal” when we learn that his tottering, geriatric goofball persona is just a mask, Jar Jar was intended to have a big reveal in Episode II or III where we learn that he’s not really a naive dope, but rather a master puppeteer Sith in league with (or perhaps in charge of) Palpatine.
However, GL chickened out. The fan reaction to Jar Jar was so vitriolic that this aspect of the trilogy was abandoned. Just too risky… if Jar Jar is truly that off-putting, it’s potentially ruinous to the Star Wars legacy to imply that he’s the ultimate bad guy of the entire saga. So pretend he was just a failed attempt at comic relief instead.
This is why Dooku seems like such a flat, shoehorned-in character with no backstory; he was hastily written in to cover the plot holes left when villain Jar Jar was redacted. Yoda was meant to duel with his literal darkside nemesis and mythological equivalent at the end of AotC: not boring old Count Dooku, but Sith Master Jar Jar. And Binks was meant to escape, not just that duel but to survive the entire trilogy… so that he could cast a shadow on the OT, too; you’d rewatch the originals knowing that the Emperor wasn’t necessarily the big baddie after all… Jar Jar is still out there somewhere. It would have been sort of brilliant.
So… the question goes to you. Is Jar Jar Binks actually a Sith Lord who will be revealed as Supreme Leader Snoke in the new movies?